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Teaching Toolkit

a professional development resource for liaison librarians at Brock University

National Information Literacy Standards:

ACRL: Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education

This new framework published by the Association of College & Research Libraries (Feb. 2015) seeks to place information literacy into a broader context in higher education.  It now defines information literacy as "the set of integrated abilities encompassing the reflective discovery of information, the understanding of how information is produced and valued, and the use of information in creating new knowledge and participating ethically in communities of learning."  The competency standards below are still currently part of the framework, as they allow for assessment of learning outcomes. The pillars of the new framework identify the following concepts as important aspects of information literacy:

  1. Authority Is Constructed and Contextual
  2. Information Creation as a Process
  3. Information Has Value
  4. Research as Inquiry
  5. Scholarship as Conversation
  6. Searching as Strategic Exploration

ACRL Framework for Information Literacy Toolkit


ACRL: Information Literacy Competency Standards  (pre 2015)

Information literacy forms the basis for lifelong learning. It is common to all disciplines, to all learning environments, and to all levels of education. It enables learners to master content and extend their investigations, become more self-directed, and assume greater control over their own learning. An information literate individual is able to:

  • Determine the extent of information needed
  • Access the needed information effectively and efficiently
  • Evaluate information and its sources critically
  • Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base
  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
  • Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally

United Kingdom Standards: SCONUL (Seven Pillars of Information Literacy):

1. Identify

2. Scope

3. Plan

4. Gather

5. Evaluate

6. Manage

7. Present

Australian and New Zealand Standards:  Institute for Information Literacy:

Information literate people
• recognise a need for information
• determine the extent of information needed
• access information efficiently
• critically evaluate information and its sources
• classify, store, manipulate and redraft information collected or generated
• incorporate selected information into their knowledge base
• use information effectively to learn, create new knowledge, solve problems and make
• understand economic, legal, social, political and cultural issues in the use of
• access and use information ethically and legally
• use information and knowledge for participative citizenship and social responsibility
• experience information literacy as part of independent learning and lifelong learning